Kelsey Unruh of Viola, Kansas became the 7,000,000th visitor to the Pro Football Hall of Fame when she went through the turnstile on Friday morning (August 17, 2001). Hall of Fame Vice President of Communications/Exhibits Joe Horrigan was there to greet the 10-year-old and award her prizes.
In addition to the commemorative "7,000,000th Visitor" T-shirts that were given to Kelsey and her family, the fifth-grader received a $1,000 shopping spree in the Hall of Fame's museum store. Kelsey is a fan of the Kansas City Chiefs.
As the 7,000,000th visitor, Unruh's first duty was to pull the winning entry in the Hall of Fame's summer-long promotion that celebrated the arrival of the Hall's milestone visitor. Kelsey reached into and a grabbed a winner from a barrel that contained thousands of entrees from those who have visited the Hall of Fame since Father's Day in June.
The winner -- Richard Ball of Tulsa, Oklahoma -- won an all-expense paid trip for two to the 2002 Pro Bowl in Honolulu, Hawaii.
Hall of Fame Timeline
Wooded parkland was donated from the city and a civic fund-raising campaign had, by February 8, 1962, acquired pledges totaling $378,026. Groundbreaking for the original construction was held on August 11, 1962, and on September 7, 1963, the building was first opened to the public.
The original two-building complex, containing 19,000 square feet of interior space, was almost doubled in size when a $620,000 expansion project was completed in May, 1971. The expanded three-building complex contained 34,000 square feet of interior space. A second expansion costing $1.2 million and adding a fourth building was complete in November, 1978, and increased the Hall's size to 51,000 square feet. A third expansion project, a $9.2 million program that increased the Hall's size to approximately 83,000 square feet, was completed in October, 1995.
September 7, 1963 -- Hall of Fame opens
February 5, 1973 -- 1,000,000th Visitor
September 1, 1976 -- 2,000,000th Visitor
July 7, 1981 -- 3,000,000th Visitor
September 4, 1984 -- 4,000,000th Visitor
August 18, 1991 -- 5,000,000th Visitor
July 27, 1996 -- 6,000,000th Visitor
August 17, 2001 -- 7,000,000th Visitor